Tag Archives: David Guetta

Enchanted Valley Carnival returns this December!


Enchanted Valley Carnival, also known as EVC, returns this December on 19th, 20th and 21st of December 2014. The first day of EVC will be headlined by Grammy award-winning electro dance David Guetta on the 20th of December and trance warriors Ferry Corsten and Markus Schulz as New World Punx will perform on 21st December. Some of the foreign acts this year include include Aly and Fila, SolarStone and Aruna while the homegrown local acts include Alien Chutney (Vir Das), Anish Sood, Dualist Inquiry, Lost Stories, Nucleya, Ash Roy, Reggae Rajahs, Nawed Khan, Bullzeye, Clement, Praveen Achary, Quiver and Calm Chor.

Apart from the music festival, Twisted Entertainment is proud to present the ‘Enchanted Village’. The campsite received an overwhelming response last year with it all the tents sold out on the first day. This year Enchanted Village is back with double the capacity and plenty to do during on all the 3 days. The Village aims to accommodate 2,000 people daily with multiple camping options such as BYOT (bring your own tent), Classic tents and Club tents. Activities at the campsite include a series of silent parties, workshops, yoga sessions, outdoor sports, bon fires and lots more!

Shoven Shah, Founder, EVC and Director, Twisted Entertainment said, “While the heart of all festivals revolves around music, the spirit of EVC is in the stages, the community, a campsite which will truly glorify the magic of nature and the environment. At EVC no detail will be spared ensuring every festival-goer feels that their experience was unique and their money well spent! EVC aspires to reinstate this spirit of community, connection and conversations in music that has been lacking in many music festivals conducted in the recent past. EVC will connect fans directly with the artists they love like David Guetta and New World Punx and become a sanctuary for forward-thinking music fans seeking life-affirming experiences.”

Kartik Mohindra, Assistant Vice President, International Brands, Pernod Ricard India added, “ABSOLUT globally has been associated with art and creativity. In India, music has always been a very popular art form which is witnessing a change in the last few years. This is where the festivals like EVC fit in and provides the new age music followers with a great setting to truly enjoy music. Such events are a perfect fit with the brand.”

Mr. Vivek Kumar, CEO Aamby Valley City and Hotel Sahara Star said “EVC is a festival in a category of its own. So working with EVC is a perfect fit, and connects us with the new generation of consumers around the world. EVC is truly a meeting place of music and fans at a one of its kind destination venue. The festival goers are in for a visual and acoustic treat with the headline line-up’s having some world-class names that will breathe life into India’s music scene. We are sure that the line-up coupled with tremendous scale and grandiose of the event will leave everyone asking for more.”

David Guetta said, “I’m excited to be coming back to India and headlining the second edition of EVC Festival in Aamby Valley this December. All my fans from Mumbai and Pune should watch this space for more!’

New World Punx said, “Hey India! We are ready for EVC 2014! This will be the first time for New World Punx to play in India, and to top it off we’ll finally get to meet all our fans at Aamby Valley City, Festival Arena. We’re so excited; you warriors are in for a treat… See you this December!”

Multi genre music along with and some of the most sort after live headliners in the game will be spread across EVC’s many stages with longer DJ sets and a host of curated arenas. The highlight of the event will be the specially created ABSOLUT zones, which will integrate an exclusive brand experience.


Sound Awake – Reattempting EDM


India has always been recognized worldwide as a land of festivals. Love them or hate them, none of us complain when we get that random holiday from work. DNA Networks, with their new project Sound Awake tried to add the Indian flavor to an already established concept – EDM festivals – which have been a major driver of music tourism in Europe and the Americas.

DNA went all the way to secure some of the top international DJs who have a history of performing at the top EDM festivals and brand names with that one famous track separating them from the total unknowns. To their credit, being popular is not the same as being good, and we gave them the respect they deserved and went in with an open mind.

Sound Awake - Reattempting EDM

Sound Awake was hosted by Bangalore on the 4th of August at the Supernova Convention Centre, starting early at 11 AM but going on till the city limits of 11 PM. The venue was spacious, discreet and thus hilariously far for city dwellers. The headliners for the first ever Indian EDM festival were Darude, Taboo, Yves LaRock and Dirty Vegas; of which only two managed to turn up for the event. The media were informed of Taboo and Darude’s absence on arrival.

However, most people forget that music is only half of what makes a good music festival. Just look at Tomorrowland – you can find the top DJs of the world in Ibiza or Rio at most times of the year; what you won’t find is the epic stages and mad crowds that make the experience what it is. This is something DNA picked up on and the entire event was very visually appealing. The four stages each had their own charm, and with the flea market thrown in you could get that relaxing Goa feel of being close to the beach.

Sound Awake - Reattempting EDM

Now let’s take a look at what the four stages had to offer. First up was the MTV Indie stage – quite ordinary looking, this stage went live at 11 AM opening up the musical proceedings by hosting local DJ talent that played to a crowd of less than 100 people, trying their very best to get over the Sunday morning blues. Local heroes DJ Clement and DJ Ivan played on till 2 and were the first bright sets of the day, more on DJ Ivan later.

Sound Awake - Reattempting EDM

The next to open was the Heineken Hed Kandi stage – a crystal ball housing the DJ made this one of my favorite stages. The ball was lit up with some mind blowing visuals as the sun went down and truly got the party started. By this time the crowd had grown to the higher hundreds and the festival vibes were kicking in. The highlights were Igor Project and DJ Dan Van, who was occasionally complimented by two beautiful women from Ministry of Sound playing the Violin and Sax respectively – adding the missing Oomph to some standard commercial mixes. Igor Project was involved with the crowd from right after his set, all the way till the end and played the perfect MC – keeping the party going every time the crowd lost interest. The set list was quite well mixed with the stand out tracks being sing-along mixes of ‘Summertime Sadness’ (only because of the amazing visuals and that one beat drop) and ‘We Are Your Friends’, which had a slightly edgy thump about it missing from most of the other songs.

Sound Awake - Reattempting EDM

Kingfisher Ministry of Sound stage was the third stage to open at the festival – with big names like Santero, Tim Cullen and Shane Kehoe getting the best seats in the house – on top of a massive speaker pile up setting that I wish I could re-create in my living room! Upbeat mixes of ‘Hello’ and ‘We Found Love’ kept with the sing along theme of the festival. Shane Kehoe did briefly take it to the next level with a monster mix of ‘Camorra’ by Nicky Romero with bass drops sent from heaven, immaculate scratch timings and perfect fade outs for the downtempo bits. Expectedly so, the Bangalore crowd had the best reaction to ‘Losing My Religion’ by R.E.M and ‘Get Lucky’, the new Daft Punk super hit. At this stage you could see a theme emerging of rocky sing-along mixes.

Sound Awake - Reattempting EDM

The grand finale at the main Pepsi DNA Live stage was delayed a bit, but with LaRock opening it was definitely worth the wait. The crowd had reached its peak with close to 10,000 people as it slowly moved across the venue from other stages. The level of anticipation grew and the crowd was rewarded with an overall decent set list full of EDM classics and  the occasional nonsense. Classic mixes of ‘S.O.S’ by Rihanna and ‘Allien’ by Pryda were bang on cue and did the night justice, but I was equally disappointed to hear ‘Kolavari Di’ being snuck into the set. Shapeshifters had a  very forgettable track list which would have been better suited to the first half of the day – yes it was original and immersive but they simply could not keep up with the crowd’s energy levels. ‘Lola’s Theme’ was an obvious exception, but that was the least expected from this veteran duo. Their music was mostly pure downtempo beats which gave the crowd the perfect opportunity to refill those beer glasses.  Dirty Vegas, who have a Grammy to their name, more than made up for it with their spectacular live act – involving Steve Smith singing the words to most of their mixes, most notably ‘Need Somebody To Love’ and their evergreen original ‘Days Go By’ where the crowd was equally involved. Definitely something I would like to see again!

Sound Awake - Reattempting EDM

In-between all this magic were some generic commercial tracks that littered the night, the likes of Swedish House Mafia‘s ‘Greyhound’ and ‘Save The World (Tonight)’ to name some. But I did hear my new favorite song  as well – a brilliant mix of ‘Sweet Dreams’ (Avicci mix),  Daft Punk’s  ‘Harder,Better,Faster,Stronger’ and David Guetta‘s ‘Without You’ with a drop before every chorus. You could never tell which song would follow after the drop and the alchemy was quite unique.

Let’s go back to the cliché of ‘Bangalore likes Rock’ which was a standout theme at this festival. This was the first time I witnessed a near mosh-pit at an EDM gig when Nirvana‘s ‘Smells like Teen Spirit’ and Pink Floyd‘s ‘Another Brick In The Wall’ were played back to back. Hopefully we can get out of this mindset and have artists stop feeding fuel this stereotype.

Sound Awake - Reattempting EDM

LaRock had to come back on stage to fill for the absence of Darude and Taboo, and this time he managed to outdo his previous set. The first real scratchy – edgy mix that was played all day, Benny Benassi‘s ‘Satisfaction’ would have been most people’s highlight of the entire festival if only he didn’t close with his signature mix of ‘Rise Up’. Both tracks are fairly popular, but sounded significantly different from the iPod version many of us carry around. One of those times you really appreciate artists who try to stay fresh and relevant.

Sound Awake - Reattempting EDM

LaRock left the stage to a rapturous applause and chants of One More. Igor Project then came on to let the crowd know of the after party at the Hed Kandi stage – DJ Ivan was doing another set just for us!

I’m not sure how to interpret this, but DJ Ivan doing a repeat set drew the biggest reaction from the crowd all festival. As he took his seat in the crystal sphere the lasers started beaming and Bangalore’s favorite DJ took a bow to his beloved audience. One by one the Ministry of Sound DJs came up to the stage to say their farewells, while Igor Project was omnipresent with his smoke gun, spraying the crowd with every bass drop – a sign for the unaware to reach for the skies.

Sound Awake - Reattempting EDM

My new highlight for the night, something that managed to outdo Yves LaRock playing ‘Rise Up’ – was DJ Ivan busting out Above&Beyond‘s ‘Sun & Moon’ to a large gathering of Bangalore’s ‘real’ EDM fans – as they all put their hands up in unison and sang the words with their eyes closed, a sort of prayer to show thanks for the night.

Overall, DNA Networks’ new venture into the Electronic space can be deemed a success. Yes it needs bigger names from the industry to come down, maybe a later start time, less Rock mixes and a closer to home venue, but as DJ Ivan himself said to the crowd, This is something big and it only gets better from here. We wholeheartedly agree and look forward to the next installment!

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Akash Kaul

Akash is an Investment Banker by day, and a video game junkie by night. He enjoys reading, writing sappy love songs and discovering new music. Follow him @defysky


Street Cred live at The Stage- Manajsa, New Delhi


It’s always interesting to watch an a capella group live. Especially one with the kind of credentials Street Cred holds. Most of the members of the group, led by Soumya Jha, are or were part of various college music groups and some were a part of Delhi ensemble Artists Unlimited. I reached the venue just in time to see the in-house band finish up their last two songs (‘Sweet Child of Mine’ going into ‘Won’t Go Home Without You’). Street Cred took their time to come on stage, which, as I later found out, was because they didn’t have enough mikes to work with. On asking around, I got to know that this was due to some miscommunication regarding the band’s tech rider. The sound engineer, though really sloppy behind the console, must be given credit for arranging extra mikes at 8:00 in the evening on a Sunday.

Post a rather long soundcheck, Street Cred was ready to take off. They started their set with a well-structured Michael Jackson medley, which included ‘Man in the Mirror’, ‘Beat It’, ‘Thriller’ and ‘Billie Jean’. After a strong opening, they moved on to the strongest song in the set, a jazz-based song, ‘Walking Down the Street’ by The Real Group. The next song, ‘I’m Yours’ by Jason Mraz, was one song that, according to me, seemed the most out of place in the entire set. However, the group still did a good job on it. They then moved on to another medley – ‘Nothing on you’, ‘My Love’ and ‘Rocketeer‘. While they were well-arranged and well-sung, I felt that they could’ve made it a bit longer, though I must admit it was probably because I was influenced by the complexity and length of the Michael Jackson medley.

The band then sang a cover of ‘Teardop’ by Massive Attack. This would’ve been the strongest song of the set, if only half of the singers hadn’t looked self-conscious while singing it! I guess it was a new addition to the set and not everyone was equally comfortable with it. Yet, it came out almost perfect, minus the sound guy playing havoc with the lead vocalist’s mike levels. From here the group took a two-minute break while the beat boxer kept the crowd entertained with a solo performance. Very easily one of the strongest links in the Street Cred chain, Darwin is an extremely talented beat boxer. Incorporating a host of different drum sounds and grooves, he even added vinyl scratch sounds to his solo performance, enthralling everyone in the crowd.

The group came back with a cover of ‘That Thing’ by Lauren Hill – well sung, but the song itself was overshadowed by Darwin’s solo performance. Their last two songs were the most entertaining of the evening. First was a mash up of ‘What Goes Around’ by Justin Timberlake and a Bollywood number, ‘Tujhe Bhula Diya’. The sound guy again came in the way of a perfect execution by messing up the male lead’s vocal levels. The final song of their set was ‘Memories’ by David Guetta. Intrigued by an a capella group covering an electronic dance number, I paid extra attention to this and wasn’t disappointed. It’s a tricky business, arranging an electronic song to suit a capella, and Street Cred really proved their worth with this one. After their set, the crowd screamed for an encore. After a minute of contemplation and taking the crowd’s opinion, they performed ‘Walking on Sunshine’ again and took a bow afterwards.

The strongest and weakest points of the gig were quite obvious – Street Cred’s strength lies in its sheer talent and knack for excellent arrangement. With a beat boxer (who is also an accomplished singer), the group is rather cohesive with a keen ability in giving the crowd what it wants. The group’s entire performance was marred by sound issues. Mild feedback here and there, mike levels changing mid-song and rechecks being required after every two songs or so tend to kill the buzz that their music creates. However, in this case, these issues are somewhat justified considering the group had to sound check with their audience already present rather than well before the show. All in all, for someone like me who always enjoys a strong melody at a gig, it was a treat to watch Street Cred perform. Hopefully, next time I’ll get to watch them sans technical difficulties.


Mihir Joshi’s The Bombay Rock Project at Inorbit Mall, Mumbai





The Bombay Rock Project, although being a new entrant into Mumbai’s music scene, comprises a line-up of musicians who are well established in their own right, each of whom plays for a number of city bands. The gig they were playing today was at a mall, and I didn’t really know what to expect from them in terms of music, or the venue’s sound setup.

It was a typically windy and rainy June evening in Vashi, as the band set themselves up in the Inorbit Mall compound, close to the entrance. The place was sheltered by an unusually psychedelic looking ceiling way above, and kept out most of the rain. There was a sparse crowd present, as you’d expect in a mall, most of who were either known to the band, or curious passers-by.

A quick chat with one of the band members told me that I was to expect covers of classic Bollywood songs, with a twist, and maybe a couple of English songs thrown in as well. This surprised me, given the kind of music that I’ve heard each of these musicians play before with other bands.

So finally after a long drawn out sound check, the band was good to go. On lead guitar was Sanju Aguiar of Devoid, on bass was Ishaan Krishna of The Hoodwink Circle, on drums was Agnnelo Picaardo of Dischordian, on keyboards and saxophone was Nigel Rajaratnam of Dischordian, and spearheading the project was The Works’ vocalist, Mihir Joshi.

The first song was an upbeat cover of the title track of the Amitabh Bacchan starrer, Don, and set the stage for an energetic set list. The next was a cover of ‘Janu Meri Jaan’, from the 1980 classic, Shaan. At this point, I must admit I didn’t quite know what to make of the band. It felt a little bit indulgent, and more like they were playing to the masses, and not to a more discerning audience.

The band seemed tight and the overall sound was fairly good, given the windy conditions and that the location was for all practical purposes, a driveway. Ishaan had broken the top string of his bass guitar at the end of the second song, but to everyone’s bewilderment, nonchalantly proceeded to continue without it.

The next one was a rather crowd-pleasing mash-up medley of ‘Summer of ’69’, ‘Sweet Child o’ Mine’, and ‘Where The Streets Have No Name’. The songs were blended together quite well, but essentially stayed true to the originals. This was followed by another two hindi covers of the songs ‘Dekha Na’ and ‘Jawani Janeman’. So far, I had no complaints about the performance itself, but given the set list, it felt a little like we were watching an Amitabh Bacchan tribute gig.

Things started picking up with the next song, an interesting jazz-like cover of  ‘Dum Maaro Dum’ with a nice drum solo from Agnnelo and a piano solo by Nigel. Things got even more interesting with a reggae mash-up of John Mayer’s ‘Your Body Is A WonderLand’ and Lucky Ali’s ‘O Sanam’, scoring highly on the creativity scale.

The next two songs were covers of ‘Saara Zamaana’ and ‘Aap Jaisa Koi’, both of which had a distinct classic rock feel to them, and were followed by ‘Inteha Ho Gayi’ (yet again featuring the Big B) and was for me the best song so far, with Nigel switching to the saxophone towards the end.

Tossing in another English track, the band did an unusual take on the David Guetta house sensation, ‘Love Is Gone’, before moving back into hindi mode with a cover of the title track of the movie ‘Rock On’ as Mihir went into the crowd and got people to sing along with the chorus.

In response to the crowd’s request for another fast song, Mihir belted out ‘Dance Dance’, probably not my favourite of the evening, but there was a lot of energy in the performance, and some nice guitaring by Sanju. The list concluded with ‘Om Shanti Om’ and a cover of Deep Purple’s ‘Smoke On The Water’.

The performance overall was very entertaining. Agnnelo was solid as ever on drums, Nigel was creative with his keyboard, Ishaan was quite flawless despite playing with only three strings, and Sanju’s guitar riffs were excellent. Mihir was clearly the life of the band and though his vocals were at times a little bit pitchy, more than made up for it with some incredible showmanship and stage presence.

I’ve always found it interesting to see the name of a band qualified with the word ‘Project’. It indicates a certain lack of pretence, a degree of experimentation, and to some extent, an organised approach, all of which, The Bombay Rock Project at first glance seemed to fulfill in fair measure.

The band appears to be well prepared to take on the music scene. Their costumes and logo look to be steps towards creating a solid identity. Their performance looked tight and well rehearsed, and the members appeared relaxed and were enjoying themselves. The musicianship was of excellent quality and had a balanced sound. All in all, they appear to be unabashedly, a hindi cover band, and clearly look to be taking the commercial route by introducing rock music to the masses.